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Health law uncertainty meets reality in Illinois

Published: Thursday, Jan. 2, 2014 12:39 p.m. CDT

CHICAGO (AP) — The new year is bringing relief to some Illinoisans newly insured under the nation's health care law. Others still aren't sure whether they're covered.

The major benefits of the law took effect Wednesday. But problems with the federal website meant many people signed up at the last minute. Insurers haven't processed all the paperwork.

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois has been adding staff to keep up with calls. Worried patients without insurance cards are calling doctors like John Venetos in Chicago, who's decided to provide care and risk he won't be paid.

Stroke survivor Nancy Pace of Benton says she's relieved to have good insurance for the first time since 2005. She called Blue Cross on Wednesday, paid her premium and got her member number over the phone.

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